Skip to main content

The Faces of Iowa 4-H: Abbie Parker

Name: Abbie Parker

Current Position: Program Specialist (4-H Center)

Hometown: Fort Dodge, Iowa

Education: Degree in Communication Studies with a minor in Outdoor Education from Iowa State University.

Past Work Experiences: Worked at Geneva Point Shire, a camp in New Hampshire for two years. Camp counselor and Intern for the 4-H Center from 2004 to 2007.

Hobbies/Interests: Hiking, kayaking, sports, working with youth!

Ultimate Goal in 4-H: To get every 4-H member to attend the 4-H Camp in the summer!

I went out to the 4-H center and had the chance to visit with the Camp Director, Abbie Parker. We walked around the camp and I got to see a few of the different villages and cabins. I was pleasantly surprised by how large the center was. There was so much land and it was obvious that there are tons of things to do and so many opportunities for kids to participate in during the summer. Abbie highlighted on the fact that there are 25 specialty and combined camps. There are nine weeks of camp that include day camps for ages six to ten and overnight camps for ages seven to 17. Activities include swimming, rock climbing with a zip line, a high ropes course, a team challenge course, canoeing, archery, hiking, creek walks and more!

When talking with Abbie I learned a lot about what she does. She basically creates and runs the programs for all of the camps in the summer as well as hires and manages the staff. When camp is in session she oversees everything and keeps the camp running smoothly creating week by week schedules. Abbie’s favorite part about her job is getting to see the kids and staff grow throughout the summer. She wished someone would have encouraged her to join 4-H growing up because she would have loved the opportunity to explore different projects and different aspects of life in one program.

What does 4-H mean to Abbie? It means a place where kids get to grow and learn skills and qualities that they can use in their futures!


Popular posts from this blog

Alumni Spotlight: Julie (Wolterman) Burroughs

From State Fair Queen to baby food producer, our December Alum of the Month has used the skills gained from her 4-H experience to propel herself to success. Julie (Wolterman) Burroughs was a member of the Garfield All-Stars 4-H Club for nine years in Ida County. Some of her projects included; showing cattle, quilting, knitting, woodworking, child development and much more. She also participated in Clothing Selection, Fashion Revue and 4-H Council. 
Julie’s favorite 4-H memory was when she was crowned the 1993 Iowa State Fair Queen.  “The competition was such a valuable experience and my year as Queen, representing Iowa, was phenomenal,” said Burroughs. “The opportunity was such an honor and defined my 4-H experience.” Burroughs went on to coordinate the Iowa State Fair Queen Competition of 14 years.
Another fond 4-H memory Burroughs has is showing livestock. “I loved the energy and sense of community on livestock show day. The entire Club worked together to get the cattle washed and g…

Alumni Spotlight: Maureen Hanson

Maureen HansonPatience, responsibility, compassion, and cooperation. These are just a few words that come to mind when Maureen Hanson thinks of the values she learned through 4-H.
Maureen was an active member in Clinton County, Iowa for nine years as a member of the Junior DD and DDD, better known as DeWitt Darling Daughters, in DeWitt, Iowa. She also was a member of the DeWitt Hustlers, which at the time was considered a “boys club”, in order to show her livestock.
Maureen has multiple favorite 4-H memories, but the best was attending Intermediate Camp at the Iowa 4-H Camping Center at Madrid.
“I still vividly remember so many details of that week, and it was a life-changing experience, all for the better,” she says.
Maureen is still very active in 4-H activities, serving as a Clover bud leader in Benton County for seven years, a leader of the Bruce Boosters 4-H Club for almost nine years, and assisting with the Benton County Livestock Judging team, and it doesn’t stop there! She has…

Alumni Spotlight: Eric Hanson

Award winning KCCI 8 News morning anchor, Eric Hanson is our November Alum of the Month. Hanson graduated from Roland-Story High School. He grew up on a farm with his parents and his three siblings, who were all involved in 4-H in Story County. “4-H is important to me because it strengthen my communications skills,” said Hanson. Hanson also says the 4-H taught him confidence, leadership and communication.

He was an eight year member of the Howard Rockets and participated in swine, dog, rabbit, woodworking, rocketry, photography, communication, leadership and much more. Hanson’s favorite 4-H memory was during dog obedience class. “Dog obedience class was every Tuesday night in Ames,” said Hanson. “My 4-H leader picked me and my dog up, drove us to class with 100-ish others and we’d always go to Burger King afterwards, bonding as a group.” Hanson also met First Lady Barbara Bush in 1991 at Living History Farms and gave her a one on one presentation about tractor safety. After high school…